Jesus is not a cheat

CREDIT: Photo NAPARAZZI, via Flickr.

It must be very hard to be a professional sportsperson, with the constant pressure to perform for supporters and sponsors.

No doubt this contributed to the decision this week by disgraced Australian male cricketers to undertake a premeditated and coordinated act of ball tampering.

The level of public outcry has been extraordinary, and the call for punishment and justice has been deafening.

Yet no matter how tempted the players were to cheat, their temptation dwarfs that felt by Jesus in his life.

We read in the Bible in Luke chapter 4:1-13 that Jesus was tempted by the Devil after he spent forty days without food in the desert.

Jesus was tempted by the Devil to bow down to him, instead of trusting and worshiping his heavenly Father.

But Jesus knew that it was vital that he obey God’s word, and resist temptation.

For, if Jesus had cheated in his mission, he would have failed to have dealt with our sin on the first Good Friday.

For, it was only because Jesus was truly sinless that he could take our sin upon himself, and be punished for those sins in our place.

But more than that, by resisting the temptation to cheat in his mission to redeem his people, he also showed that he knows what it is like for us to be tempted, too.

As we read in Hebrews 2:18, “Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.”

As Smith, Warner and Bancroft make the long and lonely flight back to Australia, it is worth remembering that Jesus’ death brings forgiveness to everyone who asks him, no matter what the crime.

It is only by Jesus’ strong resolve not to cheat in his mission that sinners like you, me, and the Aussie cricketers can be saved from the punishment we deserve from God.

Jodie McNeill.